“London is now the global capital for floristry schools,” says Helen Dyson, the co-founder of the London Flower School. “We opened our doors a few months ago, and it’s quite remarkable that we managed to nab that name.”
People come from all over the world to learn the artistry behind flower design. The school hosts sessions for future florists, alongside short courses for those who wish to dip their toes in the industry, get to grips with some of the basics, or who simply want to have a day of floral fun with friends.
Helen is a teacher by trade – after 25 years in the classroom, she decided to give it up and become a florist. While training in this new industry, she found that the teaching quality wasn’t there. “There is this perception that if you can do, you can teach but that just isn’t the case,” she says.
“I came to realise that so many of these courses, which were so expensive, weren’t equipping people with the tangible business skills they need to be a florist,” she says. “Teaching is such a passion of mine and I thought why not combine this with my newly nurtured skills and teach floristry with the quality it deserves.”
LFS includes classes on business developing and marketing, while also holding presentations on floristry throughout time, putting flower arranging in context and providing inspiration for students.
“There is a difference between being a good and a great florist,” says Helen, “Wagner just so happens to be one of the greats. He is an artist and flowers are his tool. It is amazing seeing all of these people pursuing their passion and walking out of the building so inspired and invigorated.”
The combination of a dedicated teacher and a florist-cum-artist has allowed this fledging school to come about with the speed and ease it has.
“We both work 24/7,” says Helen, “we live and breathe this business but it is not a job, it is our passion.”